Disgraced Former Speaker Scott Jensen Returns to the Scene of the Crime

Oct 26, 2010

For Immediate Release                                                                           Contact: Rep. Donna Seidel

October 27, 2010                                                                                                           608-258-9225


Disgraced Former Speaker Scott Jensen

Returns to the Scene of the Crime


MADISON – An avalanche of negative political advertisements, paid for with unlimited, undisclosed donations, is blanketing ten Assembly districts in Wisconsin, all connected by one common theme: former Assembly Speaker Scott Jensen.

If the name is familiar, it’s because Jensen was charged and convicted eight years ago with three felony counts of misconduct in office and one misdemeanor for an ethics violation by a public official.  Jensen has since appealed his convictions, and is still awaiting trial.  Now he’s returning to the scene of his alleged crimes by waging harsh, misleading attacks in an attempt to turn voters against Democratic incumbents and candidates.

“We don’t know who is funding Scott Jensen’s war, but we can only guess that it’s being fueled by the corporate special interests who want to roll back important reforms that Democrats fought to pass and that our candidates, when elected, will protect,” said Assistant Majority Leader Donna Seidel.  “Assembly Democrats have a history of standing up for middle class families, not big corporations.  We shut down a huge loophole that allowed big corporations to dodge state taxes by setting up an address in another state.  Now Scott Jensen and his special interest friends will do anything it takes to prevent more reforms for middle class families and small businesses.”

Jensen is a senior adviser for the American Federation of Children (http://federationforchildren.org/leadership) formerly known as All Children Matter, and the Jobs First Coalition. The two groups are estimated to have spent at least $336,000 on political mailings distorting the record of Assembly Democratic incumbents and candidates so far, and an additional $214,988 in television and radio ads.

The non-partisan Wisconsin Democracy Campaign has written about Jensen’s notable involvement in this year’s election:

“Meanwhile, the former speaker has resurfaced in Wisconsin politics in a big way, spearheading the efforts of a group called the American Federation for Children which has registered as a corporation making independent expenditures in state legislative races. This reincarnation of the Republican front group All Children Matter also is sponsoring undisclosed phony issue ads. Word is the group intends to dump something on the order of $100,000 into each of a dozen or so key Assembly races in the final days before the November 2 general election.” (http://www.wisdc.org/email-2010-10-15.html) titled Jensen keeps busy while waiting for new trial.

The targets of these mailings have included Rep. Ted Zigmunt (AD 2), Rep. Kristen Dexter (AD 68), Rep. Phil Garthwaite (AD 49), Rep. Jim Soletski (AD 88), Rep. Ann Hraychuck (AD 28), Rep. Mark Radcliffe (AD 92), Rep. Kim Hixson (AD 43), and candidates C. W. King (AD 67) and John Simonson (AD 51).  The groups are also active in State Senate seats, as well as in supporting Rep. Bob Ziegelbauer (AD 25).


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